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An American author, an unforgettable film

Friday, February 09, 2018

World-famous American author and civil rights activist Alice Walker turns 74 today, on her birthday. Walker is perhaps best known as the author of the novel, ‘The Colour Purple’ which was turned into a memorable film in the Eighties by director/producer Steven Spielberg and which starred Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey (incidentally Spielberg’s film release ‘The Post’, based on newspaper The Washington Post’s exposition of the Pentagon Papers, has won Oscar nominations for Best Picture and for Best Actress – Meryl Streep -- this year). Walker, in her time, made history as the first African-American woman to win the Pulitzer prize for literature as well as the National Book Award in 1983. The book tells the story of an African-American woman in the South who is abused and exploited first by her father and then by her husband, until she finally musters the courage to unite with her sister and discover strength in togetherness. The movie is a classic and in 1986 won 10 Oscar nominations including for Best Actress (Goldberg) and Best Supporting Actress (Winfrey). It can apparently also be viewed on YouTube. Do watch it for its delicate treatment of women’s issues, even as the #MeToo movement gathers momentum worldwide.

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